Françoise Nyssen, the French Minister of Culture, has announced PSB youth and family DTT channel France 4 will be axed on linear TV and transferred fully to digital distribution. No specific date has been given.
The French government – that was outlining the upcoming PSB audiovisual reform that is set to restructure both the public TV and radio services – likens France 4’s tarnsfer to digital to the BBC’s decision to move BBC3 online. The difference is that France 4’s daily slots are targeting children from 4 to 14 and a shared parents/children audience in the evenings. The BBC has not axed its two linear kids channels. Part of France 4 kids shows will go to France 5 and France 3, the reform plans.
France 4’s DTT frequency will go to news channel Franceinfo. More globally, the reform is set to achieve a €300 million economy measures by 2023, Nyssen confirmed. France Télévisions will invest €150 million more in digital by 2022. More regional programming will be aired on France 3 in the morning, in partnership with Radio France’s regional network France Bleu. The first joint experiments will start next September in a couple regions.
A dedicated task force including former BBC executive Catherine Smadjia and former France Télévisions president Marc Tessier, has been commissioned to take the reform process forward.